Changing jobs can be scary … and exciting … and overwhelming.
Becca Brown would know what it’s like to ride that emotional roller coaster.
In 2000, after graduating from Harvard University, Brown landed a job at Goldman Sachs, where she started out as a financial analyst, then moved to the Private Wealth Management team as an associate, and ultimately moved to London to work as a chief of staff.
But in 2006, she decided to go back to school.
While getting her MBA from Columbia, Brown and Monica Ferguson, her friend and classmate — and Goldman Sachs colleague at the time — decided to launch their own business.
A few years later they founded Solemates, a brand of women’s shoe care products.
Business Insider recently talked to Brown about her transition from Wall Street to startup, and asked her to share her best advice for anyone else thinking about branching off on their own. Here’s what she said:
“Follow your passion, but don’t do so blindly. Use your head. Starting a business is tough, and you’ll work harder than you’ve ever worked before, but there is nothing like it. Have a plan, get your ducks in a row, and make sure you’re ready.
“Ask for help, guidance, and advice. Try to gather as much feedback from others around you as you can. Seek out 360-degree advice — ask those more senior to you, your peers, and those more junior. You can only benefit from hearing the different perspectives. Also, don’t make major decisions when you’re not 100%. Sometimes there is no going back.
“Focus on the present moment. You can’t dwell in the past or worry too much about the future — you just have to focus on what’s right here and now, and make the best decision you can right now. One decision leads to the next, and the next, and before you know it, you’re in a totally different place in your career … and life.”
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